Medication Monitor

Generic Name (Trade Name—Company)
June 15, 2011


(Nulojix—Bristol-Myers Squibb)
Immunosuppressant to prevent kidney transplant rejection


Prophylaxis of organ rejection in adult patients receiving kidney transplant

Belatacept works by binding to CD80 and CD86 on antigen-presenting cells, thereby blocking CD28-mediated costimulation of T lymphocytes. This is beneficial because activated T lymphocytes are the predominant mediators of immunologic rejection.

Belatacept is administered as an intermittent I.V. infusion and given with basiliximab induction, mycophenolate mofetil, and corticosteroids. Data from two Phase III trials show that the overall efficacy of belatacept was similar to that of cyclosporine at 1 and 3 years. Patients treated with belatacept had superior renal function. Because of its immunosuppressing effects, belatacept is associated with many of the serious adverse reactions common with these agents, including infections and malignancies.